Goatee Greeting

February 8, 2012 § 52 Comments

This is going to sound so fucking pathetic.

I went into the cafe at lunch time yesterday to get my latte.  I am friendly with all the people behind the counter.  They are always so welcoming and smiling and chatty.  One of the young men served me.  Every time I say, “How are you?”, he breaks out into a big smile and replies, “You know me, I am always cheerful.”  And he is.

Yesterday, as I approached the counter, and before I’d had a chance to say hello, he said, almost flirtatiously, “Hello, darlin’!” and gave me the hugest smile ever.  He has a goatee, and his lip is pierced right in the middle with a socking great ring, almost as big as one through a bull’s nose or a pig’s snout.  And he must be young enough to be my son.  But I thought, hey, that’s one of the nicest greetings I have had in a very long time from anyone other than a supportive girlfriend.  It quite gave a spring to my step for the rest of the afternoon.

Such is the stuff which comprises the highlight of a plankton’s day.


§ 52 Responses to Goatee Greeting

  • fi says:

    Yay!! He’s done to you only what I’ve been advocating we do to other people all this time.

    • Jo says:

      Fi. Yes. Yes. Yes. You’re right.
      Not advocating grinning like a hyena at every passing person.
      But smiling is just such a great thing in itself. It makes you – and other people – feel better. Even when you’re feeling like shit. (Within reason of course. Not talking about clinical depression.).
      I’m all for it! And a definite practitioner..

      • fi says:

        I spent the afternoon at work taking photos of everyone for a team info thing, and everyone had to smile at me. It did actually cheer me up! But its like the story of the person you smile at in the morning gets on the bus a bit happier and smiles at the driver, and the driver is cheered up and smiles at the next passenger who is cheered up etc etc etc. It just does make a difference. And actually who wouldn’t find someone who looks happy more approachable than someone with a sour face?

      • Jo says:

        Yes. I love that story about one person smiling at another and how it passes on…and on..to someone else Fi.
        It’s a gorgeous thing.
        Makes me smile just thinking about it…..

    • Jo says:

      Not pathetic at all P. A warm, happy, smiling human exchange. Unexpected, unsolicited, uplifting. Entirely deserved.
      Fab. Let’s all do more of it.
      Don’t you dare deem your reaction to this cheery young bloke pathetic ever again P. It is so not.
      Or I shall get cross with you. And we wouldn’t want that, now would we…

      • The Plankton says:

        NO, we wouldn’t!!! xx

      • fi says:

        Am away with work and staying in a hotel tonight. I ordered food to take to my room that was promised in 10 mins but actually took 40. As I expected it to take 10 I sat in the bar. And commented here while I was waiting. So I smiled at the man next to me who chatted to me while I waited. And that was good fun as he smiled and chatted back. I smiled at the waitress as I complained about how long I was waiting and was offered another glass of wine. I smiled at the waiter who brought my meal to me on a tray and he offered to take it to my room and forgo the 5 pound tray charge, and the bar staff had provided me with another complimentary glass of wine. Unfortunately I’m now sitting in bed and its not even half 8 as I’ve had too much wine, and I’ll feel crap tomorrow, but that’s what smiling gets you.

      • Jo says:

        I’ve just put two little x’s to P’s reply and it’s come out under Fi’s!
        That’s fine. You have ’em Fi. Loved your hotel account…

    • Jo says:

      Fi. The hyena bit? Didn’t mean that you were advocating it!
      Oh lordy.

      • fi says:

        Didn’t think that Jo. Although actually I do smile at people if I pass them in work and I don’t know them. I never used to but someone did it to me, so I paid her attention and noticed she did it to everyone, and lo and behold, everyone thought she was friendly and approachable and liked her. A smile is such a simple thing but so powerful. And now I’m older and my face is wrinkling in to the habitual expression I use, I’d prefer to have a nice face than a frowning and grumpy one.

      • Jo says:

        Fi. You’re my alter ego.
        I try to do this too. I do like smiling at people. (Sometimes I don’t. I’m not superwoman.). And I like my laughter lines.
        My remark was tongue in cheek.
        I just had this silly visual image of my going about ‘gurning’. But it was nothing to do with your words.

      • Jo says:

        Fi. It’s 10.13pm. Hi thee to thy hotel bed you lush you.
        We want your erudite views, compos mentis tomorrow! x

    • Jo says:

      Btw P. The title of this post is great.
      Everytime I’m alerted to a new comment and the words ‘Goatee Greeting’ appear, it makes me laugh.

  • Jane says:

    Why is that pathetic? can you only get a little fillip out of compliments or nice gestures from men with barefaces and 3 piece suits…come on P. you are a woman of a certain age..time to relax and enjoy, try and shed some of the angst that is weighing you down and stopping you making the most of whatever might swing by

  • Jane says:

    I suppose your point is that why should such a small gesture make such an impression. It’s often the small things that make the day seem that little bit brighter. Do you imagine that it is only you that gets a kick out of such (some may say) trivial interaction? We all feel great to be made a fuss of, no matter how small that fuss may be, as Fi says, try being the one that makes someone else feel good, a bit like your matchmaking friend who said ‘someone did it for me, now I am passing it on’ it works with flirting and acts of general loveliness too

  • MsHaversham to be says:

    The emotional response you describe sounds normal, not pathetic, to me. Deep down everyone feels unloved/unloveable at times. This, certainly for me, is exacerbated as a plankton. Or you get lost in your plankton routine (we all know the smiling and everything is rosy drill). So I say your response is normal, don’t question it. Just enjoy it.

    Lucky you too!

  • Barry says:

    Enjoy P …you only get back what you give out …you deserved a “Moment” and you got it …… Have a NICE day x

  • rosie says:

    Aw, that’s quite cute. Bet he’s thinking, “I’d give ‘er one!”

  • Lydia says:

    Some men can flirt and some can’t. Some people like it and others don’t.

    If you really are plankton (which you’re not) then a pierced low earner in a cafe is surely the sea level at which you need to fish if I were being provocative.

    You can do the same back. People do like those who smile and chat to them and most men don’t even mind being asked out if it’s done well enough.

    • The Plankton says:

      Why am I not a plankton? I am the Original! Px

    • Jane says:

      Lydia!! a pierced low earner in a cafe would be your level if you were a plankton, not sure who tha is most insulting to. Has it occurred to you? …that same chap, due to his youth, may be a student and there because he is paying his way through university. For all you know he could be a budding astro physicist. You could try and stop being so damned judgemental and snotty, but then why break the habit you seem to go through life with!

      • fi says:

        My daughter’s partner is a pierced low earner in a supermarket. But you know what? He’s very nice and he makes her happy.

      • Jo says:

        My lovely next door neighbour’s partner (pierced) is a fab musician. But unless/until they’re ‘discovered’, musicians can have a hard time of it.
        So guess what? To keep things ticking over and to contribute to the household – yes – he sometimes works in a supermarket!
        He is the sweetest, loveliest, most gorgeous and funny man that one coud ever wish to meet. With an abundance of talent.
        She is a deputy head teacher. Older than he.
        They are as happy as Larry. (Whoever he is!).

      • Jo says:

        Meant ‘could’.

      • MissM says:

        Giving this created ‘Lydia’ persona this totally contemptuous snobby attitude is the sort of attention to detail that makes me think the man creating her has quite a talent. His talent is up there with the likes of Chris Lilley, and I think if he is not writing professionally for tv yet, he soon will be.

      • Jo says:

        I’m sorry MissM. I have to disagree.
        I think ‘Lydia’s’ writing shows no talent whatsoever.
        She often makes no sense. Her punctuation can be appalling.
        And her spelling is crap.

      • fi says:

        Agree Jo. Lydia is a very one dimensional character, with only one contribution to any debate “I am rich and clever and like sex and housewives or women who don’t earn a lot aren’t as worthy as me”. This is ALL she/he says and has been saying for over 6 months now.

      • Jo says:

        Yes Fi.
        Plus ‘I can hardly move for all the men who are pursuing me’.
        Oh, and don’t forget the island of course.

      • MissM says:

        Aw……don’t forget she sings very old operatic songs at the piano and reads to her children.

      • Jo says:

        MissM. Love the piano thing..!
        But, to be fair the reading to her children is a good thing.

      • MissM says:

        Indeed reading to children is a good thing, I was just under the impression that one had only recently finished tertiary studies and almost instantly secured herself a highly paid job, so the image I have is of Lydia reading Thomas Hardy or something similar to a bunch of teenagers/young adults around the fire.

  • Steve H says:

    Pleased that his “hello darlin” gave you a lift.

    However, the reason why you maybe don’t receive as many compliments in a similar vein is that men are VERY wary of what the reaction might be in today’s world when offering a cheery “hello darlin”.

  • MissBates says:

    I am always vaguely startled when ANYONE notices me, ranging from the type of encounter you describe with a cheerful counterman to a friend or co-worker complimenting me on my hair/new dress/shoes, etc. It’s the occasional emergence from middle-aged invisibility that always takes me by surprise.

  • Barry says:

    If a Woman looks nice, has changed her look or generally gives me a “Buzz” I always compliment her…it costs nothing , and gives us both a warm feeling I find , and I’m not hitting on anyone …although sometimes I think as Rosies’ post !

  • Empress says:

    It’s always lovely when someone treats you warmly and is pleased to see you. There’s nothing pathetic is this, we all love it if it happens to us. You are pleasant to him why wouldn’t he return it. Small pleasures and daily kindnesses make a big difference in anyone’s day.

  • Jo says:

    I guess it must feel like Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak has suddenly been chucked off…

  • Jo says:

    ‘..must feel like..’?
    Sorry folks. I do include myself as knowing the feeling of having this cloak about my shoulders!

  • EmGee says:

    Apparently young Master Lip-Ring felt at ease enough to reciprocate Ms P’s morning greetings ahead of her. A small thing yes, but an acknowledgement that her past greetings have been duly noted and not gone unnoticed. ie, She is not invisible!!!!

    I too, am in favor of smiling and greeting strangers, it is contagious!

  • Jo says:

    That’s what I said about P, not being invisible..

  • plumgrape says:

    There was an old Man with a beard,
    Who said, “It is just as I feared!
    Two owls and a hen,
    Four larks and a wren,
    Have all built their nests in my beard!”

  • Chris says:

    There is nothing pathetic about nice things happening to one.This is how life should be. Then again, maybe I’m wrong. I’m not ‘ cool ‘ and I don’t have ‘ attatude ‘ !!! Why not flirt ferociously with goatee andhave a bit of lighthearted fun ?

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